Madrid derby: Real, Atletico play out goalless draw
Real Madrid squandered the opportunity to go on top of the La Liga standings after they played out a barren draw at the Santiago Bernabeu on Saturday.
It was a game when the goalkeepers from both the sides stood out to be the stars. For Atletico, it was Jan Oblak who once again asserted his stand as one of the best keepers in the world as he pulled off two good saves to Marco Asensio and Dani Carvajal in the second half. Courtois, playing his first Madrid derby for Real against his former club stopped Diego Costa and Antoine Griezmann from scoring.
But what would worry Real Madrid, even more, is the fact that their star player Gareth Bale was substituted at half-time and coach Julen Lopetegui said that the Welsh winger had discomforts in his abductor and he took him out of the match as a precaution.
This could indeed be another injury concern for Real Madrid who are without Marcelo and Isco. Bale could even miss Real’s trip to Moscow in the Champions League. Yet, it was Bale who came really close to breaking the deadlock in the first half.
Real Madrid thus have failed to defeat their city rivals at home in the La Liga, in their last six meetings. They now have similar points as leaders Barcelona, who are ahead courtesy a superior goal difference. Barcelona was earlier held 1-1 at home by Athletic Bilbao.
This result leaves Diego Simeone’s side at the fourth position with 12 points and Sevilla’s 3-1 win over Eibar propelled them to the third place with 13 points.
The Champions League winners had more possession on the ball while it was their opponents who looked lethal with their attack. But efforts from Costa and Griezmann were nullified by Courtois in the first half.
Bale got a great chance to score the opener in the first half with a volley which just missed the far post. Oblak almost conceded the goal when he kicked the ball straight to the Marco Asensio but much to his good luck, the ball bounced back into his gloves.
Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos almost pulled off a repeat of his late goal against the same opponents in the final of the Champions League in 2014 but his header went wide.
Image credit-Soccer Laduma